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Eatontown Personal Injury Law Blog

Brain bleeds: Here's what you should know

There are many kinds of traumatic brain injuries, but one that needs immediate care is a brain bleed. When the brain is bleeding, pressure builds up inside the skull. There is a real risk that further damage could occur as the room inside the skull is limited and pressure is placed on the brain.

A brain bleed, also known as a brain hemorrhage, can be deadly. The speed at which the blood flows into the skull, the swelling of the brain as well as other factors play a role in how serious the condition is. When the brain is bleeding, the normal flow of oxygen is also impaired, which can lead to a stroke.

Mass notification can help employers warn workers of dangers

Employers in New Jersey and across the United States each have a duty of care to provide their employees with a safe work environment. A critical aspect of a safe work environment is being able to alert employees should a situation arise. Communicating effectively with employees has its challenges. Employers with a large number of employees or a large workplace might find it difficult to reach everyone in a sufficient time frame.

Effective workplace communication relies on two key factors: speed and reach. Messages must get out quickly to warn employees of dangerous conditions that could lead to workplace accidents. Second, messages must reach 100% of employees so that everyone stays safe. If employers are only using one form of communication, such as email, it might not reach those who only check their email once a day. Adding too many alert systems, however, slows the time it takes to get the messages out.

Medication errors pose health risk for patients

When Minnesota residents Minnesota seek medical help, they expect to receive the right medication for their illness. On any given week, four-fifths of adults in the United States use a prescription medicine, over-the-counter option or a natural substitute, while 33% take five or more different medicines at the same time. When people take multiple drugs, they are more likely to suffer adverse events or side effects. In some cases, people may face severe injuries or life-threatening complications as a result of adverse drug interactions or mistaken prescriptions. This may be especially dangerous when doctors and pharmacies fail to carry out their responsibilities to protect their patients against dangerous drug interactions.

In some cases, doctors may be unaware that patients are taking other medications, but in other cases, they do not check to confirm that people are receiving multiple drugs or determine how they may interact with one another. In other cases, people may receive an incorrect dose of what would otherwise be a correct prescription. Children may be especially vulnerable to this type of dosage error because of the reduced doses they require.

Report shows how supervisors help establish safety culture

A new report from Dodge Data & Analytics shows that construction contractors are becoming more focused on job site safety and that they are looking to their supervisors and job site workers to promote safety. Residents of New Jersey should know that contractors singled out four factors as being essential to a safety program; all four relate to supervisors or job site workers.

First, 84% of contractors believe job site workers must be involved in the program. Eighty-three percent believe that supervisors should have strong leadership skills for the program to work. Eighty-two percent say the two groups should hold regular safety meetings. Lastly, 77% assert that both groups should have continual access to safety training.

Cancers, vascular issues and infections commonly misdiagnosed

Medical mistakes are a top cause of injury and death for hospital patients in New Jersey and across the United States. According to a new study, most of these mistakes occur during the diagnostic phase of medical care and take place in three main disease categories.

For the study, which was published in the journal Diagnosis, researchers at Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore examined data from over 11,000 U.S. malpractice cases and grouped all misdiagnosis incidents involving similar conditions into general medical categories. For example, there are dozens of different diagnosis codes for heart attacks and strokes, and the study placed them all into a category called "vascular events." The authors of the study think it is the first time that misdiagnosis incidents have been organized this way.

Workplace risks for craft brewery employees

As craft brewing has become an increasingly popular industry and hobby in New Jersey and across the country, brewery workers may face increased risk on the jobs. There are certain types of risks that can be particularly common at craft breweries, especially those started by beer hobbyists who have started to make their craft into a profitable business. Business owners have a responsibility to follow federal workplace safety guidelines; when they fail to do so, workers could face serious injuries due to accidents.

One of the most common risks of workplace accidents or injuries at a brewery is a failure to make confined spaces safe. Fermenters, kettles and other equipment often must be repaired or maintained in confined spaces that are not designed for continuous occupancy. In some cases, employees must receive an entry permit before beginning work in these spaces. Businesses must have an emergency rescue plan and monitor the atmosphere inside confined areas to ensure that they remain safe for workers to maintain the equipment. In other cases, breweries may frequently require workers to lift heavy objects like full kegs or sacks of grain. While heavy lifting can be a part of many jobs, it can also lead to serious back injuries, especially if workers do not have access to proper training or safety equipment.

OSHA to step up inspections for amputation risks

New Jersey workers may face serious safety risks on the job, especially if they operate heavy machinery. Federal standards for workplace safety are issued and enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which has announced a three-month period of outreach and education in workplaces across the country for a National Emphasis Program that will focus on the risk of amputation to limbs or fingers for factory workers. The 2019-2020 initiative comes five years after the last OSHA program focusing on amputations in 2015.

Workplace safety inspections at factories will focus on ensuring that machinery is properly guarded and secured during operation and repair in order to prevent the amputation of workers' limbs or digits when operating these devices. The program does not alter existing rules for workplace safety and properly guarded, but it does give new guidelines to inspectors to focus on these concerns while reviewing factories. Companies in the manufacturing industry are already required to install proper safeguards and equipment to protect workers from severe accidents and injuries of this type. Inspectors will seek more data about amputations in a facility and code reports and inspections differently when reviewing a factory's compliance with OSHA regulations.

Medical errors and depression may be linked

An analysis of 11 different studies found a link between depression and the likelihood of a doctor making a medical error. The study also found that doctors who made medical errors were at a greater risk of developing symptoms of depression in the future. Depression in medical professionals may lead to negative consequences for patients in New Jersey and throughout the country. It may also have negative consequences for those who may consider themselves to be depressed.

When a doctor makes a medical error, that person may feel guilty about potentially harming a patient. That individual may also be worried that the patient may file a lawsuit. Those involved with the analysis said that doctors should be held accountable for their actions without necessarily being blamed for their errors. Making such a change may help medical professionals and hospitals make greater strides in improving patient outcomes.

How double hearing protection works

New Jersey workers, regardless of their industry, can be the victims of excessive noise exposure. OSHA actually has a permissible exposure limit in place as a way to regulate noise exposure, but employers must do their part by setting up a hearing conservation program. As part of this program, employers must train employees on monitoring noise levels and provide them with the right hearing protection devices.

In cases where a singular hearing protection device is not enough, employees need double protection. The most common example of double protection is the wearing of earplugs and earmuffs at the same time. NIOSH states that workers who, over an eight-hour shift, are exposed to a time-weighted average of more than 100 A-weighted decibels should wear double protection. In the mining industry, workers must have double protection when exposed to an average of 105 dBA.

Artificial intelligence could reduce distracted driving crashes

Drivers in New Jersey and elsewhere love their cellphones and in-vehicle infotainment systems. Unfortunately, these devices are causing an increase in distracted driving accidents on U.S. roads.

According to the National Safety Council, around nine Americans are killed and an additional 100 others are injured in distracted driving crashes every day. These accidents are often caused by cellphones or other devices, but they can also be caused by distractions outside the vehicle, distractions caused by kids or pets, fatigue-related inattention, eating or playing with the radio while behind the wheel. To help reduce the risk of accidents, automakers have been offering collision avoidance and automatic emergency braking systems as options on new cars and trucks for many years. Starting in 2022, these technologies will come standard on all new vehicles.

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